About Kansas Senate Bill No. 40
The State of Kansas enacted a new law known as Senate Bill No. 40 (SB 40), which took effect March 25, 2021. SB 40 gives Boards of Education sole authority to take actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes learning modes, emergency school closures and other mitigation strategies such as masking, social distancing and other efforts.
The legislation also provides that employees, students, and parents or guardians of students who are aggrieved by an action taken, order issued, or policy adopted by the Board of Education of the District in response to COVID-19, may request a hearing to contest the action. The law states that hearings must be held within 72 hours after a request is received. If a complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome of hearing, the individual can file a civil action in district court within 30 days of the decision. The court shall conduct a hearing within 72 hours after receipt and issue an order on such petition within seven days after the hearing is conducted. The law also allows Boards of Education to adopt emergency rules of procedure to efficiently adjudicate requests for hearings. The USD 232 Board adopted rules of procedure on April 5, 2021.